This is not my tragedy. He was not my friend. I mean, he was not not my friend, but he was not my friend friend. It's funny how you have to qualify stuff, but there it is. A friend of a friend, somebody I went to some parties with when I was younger. He died. I know that in a way I have no right to say any of this. It does not belong to me: the story, the pain, the why. But there it is. And so I see it in the newspaper and read the same 3 paragraphs over and over. The way his name looks strange in print, the photo. They call him a 37 year old man which I suppose is the truth, but I am looking for something else. Friends of friends I friended on Facebook--what's on your mind? He is.
He is on my mind, too.
Bryan had an MRI and found out he needs to get shoulder surgery for a deep tear in his labrum. In the meantime he must stop all activity--no surfing, no sailing, no smiling--complete with a 6 month recovery. Zoey is fascinated with this news of surgery, and every day there are new questions. How do doctors cut into skin? Will they take out Daddy's skeleton? What color thread do they use? And like any mother not quite sure of the answers I went to the toy store and bought her the game of Operation.
It takes a very steady hand! Slowly I pull the bread basket out of the stomach, the wrench from the ankle. Cavity Sam's nose does not light up and I do not buzz, but only because Zoey has switched off the sound since it scares her. I love this game. Oh, how I wanted it as a child. The neighbors had it and for some reason it seemed exotic, so cool. Like a banana seat bike and those barettes with the braided ribbon that hung down fluttering far. Why did I not just ask for any of this? Games with fictional ailments made of white plastic, a cracked heart on the right side of the chest, 100 points.
(They've changed the game, you know. Instead of a pencil in the arm to indicate writer's cramp Cavity Sam now sports a cell phone in his finger, and the closest thing to his chest is a green rubbery thing the directions call burp bubbles. Where there once was a heart is now gas.)
None of this is related, of course, but there it is. I have been feeling fragile as of late, a little bit hollow; not so much in the sense that there is nothing inside but that there is too much.
I am not a dog person and at one point in this video Edie shits on the floor and then sits on the man's lap, but still, I cried. And there it is.